Yes, I agree with all of you, this is a really great idea and it will be interesting to see what developers come up with when they have a chance to program for the actual robot and not just a facsimilie of the platform. Is this a novel idea, does anyone know? Have other companies done similar things? I wasn't sure about that myself.
Maybe this post should be titled "Rethink Rethinks Baxter." Anyway, thanks for the post, Elizabeth. Making Baxter available to developers is a great move on Rethink's part and will help accelerate development of this important robot design platform.
This certainly creates a very potent development environment for software developers. Will save alot of integration time developing hardware and testing, especially since there seems to be so much interest in humanoid type robots.
This is a great idea. Open software for the robot could create possibilities far beyond what Baxter would have developed for its machines. This open model worked very well for Google when it gave away its Android smartphone operating system. The results were robust enough to allow Google to go toe-to-toe with Apple -- no easy feat. Because of its open approach, Android is now the leading smartphone OS in volume.
What should be the perception of a product’s real-world performance with regard to the published spec sheet? While it is easy to assume that the product will operate according to spec, what variables should be considered, and is that a designer obligation or a customer responsibility? Or both?
Biomimicry has already found its way into the development of robots and new materials, with researchers studying animals and nature to come up with new innovations. Now thanks to researchers in Boston, biomimicry could even inform the future of electrical networks for next-generation displays.
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